I have been studying the Exodus for a few months now. This is the story of how God rescued Israel from their Egyptian oppressors, and then set them on the path towards the promised land. It was a rocky path to be certain, but after a long trip and forty years of wandering, the Israelites finally received their inheritance. It took some time, but because they remained faithful, God delivered on His promise to them.
As we begin the book of Judges, we see that Joshua, like Moses before him, has passed away. The Israelites are now finishing up their occupation of the promised land. There are still a few minor battles to be fought, but the heavy lifting appears to be finished.
God’s command to them is very straightforward: He tells them to take the entire land. Do not allow any of your enemies to remain there, or they will be a problem for you.
Surely they will listen to Him…right???
“The Benjamites, however, did not drive out the Jebusites, who were living in Jerusalem; to this day the Jebusites live there with the Benjamites.” Judges 1:21
So there we have it. Despite God’s continued faithfulness, His demonstrations of power, and a very clear command; the Benjamites drop the ball. (No Buffalo Bills jokes please.) They allow some of their enemies to stay instead of driving them out completely.
We find out later in Scripture that the enemies that were allowed to stay become a consistent source of problems for Israel. Spiritually, they get sidetracked. People wander from the faith and walk away from the covering of God’s blessing.
Why did the Israelites do it? Was it just a little easier? Were they tired? Or maybe they thought it just wasn’t a big deal. Why would they choose to settle for LESS than God promised? Why did they allow themselves to become compromised?
I don’t know the answer. But here is a more important question: why do WE do the same thing?
A little compromise. So many times we allow the “little sins” to remain unchecked in our lives. A little pride. A little lust. A little greed. A little idolatry. You can fill in your own blanks.
We say things like, “It’s OK God, I am mostly obeying you.” (Mostly obedient is equal to being disobedient.) “I’m doing better than I was God, so this little compromise is OK.” or “I’m doing more good, so it outweighs the bad.” Our flawed thinking tells us we can handle it, we’re in control, it’s no big deal. But those little compromises lead to greater ones. Not sometimes—ALWAYS. A little disobedience becomes greater disobedience. For the Israelites, the end result was devastating for them nationally and individually. For us, the results can be tragic as well.
Examine your own walk today. Pray and ask Jesus to show you if there are any areas where you have compromised in your life, in your marriage, or in your family. Remember, these “little” compromises all carry with them a great cost. Let’s not choose to settle for anything less than what God has promised!
Galatians 5:7-9..."You ran well. Who hindered you from obeying the truth? This persuasion does not come from Him who calls you. A little leaven [symbolic of sin] leavens the whole lump